Sunday, November 12, 2023

Combining Bangles

Back when I was trying to make lower priced "stuff" to sell I started making "tiny bangles" for $20. Even $20 didn't feel good when I sold them due to the amount of work that I put into these bangles. I had made enough to fill a display and they've been floating around my studio and pop-ups for years now, occasionally 1 or 2 selling. I've gotten really tired of looking at them and they tend to represent the years when I had a desperation to sell something, anything. Now that I'm in a really good place and only make what I feel inspired to make I've been cleaning out my studio and removing anything that I don't like anymore or I'll cut it up to reuse the materials. 

These tiny bangles were initially on the chopping block but I have a hard time cutting up anything I've made, even if it's something I no longer like. I created them to be an option to layer with other bracelets and each other. The issue is that being only 2 or 3 beads wide doesn't allow them to keep a good bangle structure. So they end up a bit floppy and unattractive (in my mind). I'd layer them for a pop of color with other bracelets but now that I barely wear jewelry they just take up space that I'd like to reclaim.

One of my recent studio cleaning days I decided I might be able to put some of them together to make the bigger bangles that I like better. I put the first one together (above) and now I like it! They're actually fun to play with which stripes and solids go well together. It's a fun practice of putting together colors and designs in a direction I wouldn't usually take. 

Creative play has become more important to me than making to sell. I'm seeing more and more artists and makers throwing in the towel because they can't make enough to cover time, supplies, studio, not to mention the amount of work it takes to constantly post on social media, update websites etc. When we have to make to sell instead of play and discover it looses all the fun. I was starting to have days where it was more fun going to work at my day job then hunkering down in the studio. Ok, that still happens too.

This year has started to be a lot more about playing and rediscovering why I love fiber art rather than making any final products. It's more about process, play, design, new techniques and color. 

Monday, November 6, 2023

Neutral Green with Fuchsia Leaf Lariat Necklace

I forgot to post about this piece, it's already at the "Made in Michigan" Holiday Show at the Lansing Art Gallery, along with the rest of its matching earrings and bracelets. I decided I hadn't made a leaf lariat necklace in quite some time and I really enjoy this color group so it eventually came to be. I picked away at beading it in the evenings and finished it just before the show's drop off so I completely spaced on posting it to my blog until I ran into the photos. 

See this leaf lariat neckace at:

Reception: This Thurs. Nov. 9, 2023 from 5 - 8 PM

Facebook Event for the Opening Reception:

Sunday, November 5, 2023

Join Me for Weaver Sessions Spotlight for Convergence Wichita 2024


I'll be talking about the 2 seminars that I am leading at the Handweavers Guild of America Convergence Conference 2024 this week and next.  If you have the time to hop on to Zoom for these you can put in questions about these seminars during the Zoom. If you can't make it, you can watch these later on HGA's YouTube Channel.

The first Session Spotlight I am part of is this Thursday, November 9th at 1pm. I'll be talking about "Hands on Finishing your Work" which is an extension of last year's "Finish and Exhibit That Piece!" I decided to propose 3 hours for this seminar because there are a lot of types of finishing and problem solving that can happen with fiber work and I wanted time to address pieces that attendees are stuck on. I had a number of people throughout Convergence 2022 tell me that they heard my class was really informative and helpful. Another instructor told me it was wonderful I was offering this since it was a common question from students of her weaving classes...which isn't part of what she teaches. This version encourages students to bring in their piece or send me photos of works that they are stumped on so we can look at different options and ideas more in-depth.

The Second Session Spotlight I am in is next week, Monday, November 13th. In this one I will be talking about my 90 minute seminar "Keeping Track of Your Digital Art Life." Whether you are a working artist or just trying to keep documents, notes and photos organized this class will be full of the processes I use to digitally file my entire life (which is mostly my artwork).

Saturday, November 4, 2023

5 Years Sober; One Day at a Time

I celebrate 5 years of sobriety today. I had a really good meeting this morning. I've knit 31 pairs of socks among countless other projects to keep my hands busy during meetings. Now, whenever I "accidentally" buy expensive fancy sock yarn I can confidently tell myself that it's a LOT cheaper than drinking. 

5 years ago I was a mess and I didn't see life ever getting better, I was just trying to get by...and doing it very poorly. I recently reconnected with a friend and found myself saying out loud to her "I didn't ever know that it was possible to be this happy."

Of course, something came up yesterday and it reminds me that I still have a lot of work to do to be better than I was. When I hurt others deeply I also hurt myself. I still hold on to too much anger and resentment in some areas of life. And I'm so tired of hurting and being uncomfortable and anxious. On the other hand the general day-to-day stuff in life has gotten so much easier.

So here's to 5 years sober and making it one. more. day. 

A side note on the bandana in the above photos of my very pretty 5 year coin:

This bandana is the first thing I ever recall winning, I was probably about 6. I've mentioned here and there that we showed horses growing up and I don't recall having an affinity for ribbons or trophies but this piece of fabric always reminds me that I was into a nice cotton fabric even at a young age. I'll always be thankful for the grounding nature fabric and the process of making fabric has always had for me. It's a simple thing but I find nice bandanas so useful. Today I'm wearing it as a neckerchief since it's getting chilly at work but not cold enough for a thermal neck gaiter. 

To thine own self be true.

Yes, And weaving update; Half Way

I am just about to the half way point on "Yes, And" which is in the the yellow weft, the brightest color in the middle of 9 differ...